Teen Parents: Your Liberties Under Welfare Reform

If you’re under age 20 and expecting or a moms and dad, you should be at school full-time or have finished from college. If you’re under age 18 years, you have to additionally meet unique residing arrangement guidelines. You’ve still got a right to file your very own application for TAFDC advantages without your moms and dads, even although you reside using them.

1. How can the educational college attendance rules work?

Unless you have finished, if you’re under 20 you should be in twelfth grade, center or elementary college or even a in a full-time GED (highschool equivalency) system with a minimum of 20 hours each week. A week, you may be asked to do community service or other training as well if your GED program is less than 20 hours. This guideline will not use if you’re within 60 times of switching age 20. You really must be at school or even A ged system at minimum 75percent of times (15 hours away from a 20 hour program) to qualify for TAFDC advantages. If you’d like assist getting into school, pose a question to your DTA worker. The worker is meant that will help you find a course which help you receive time care and purchase transportation expenses to college and time care. But, you simply cannot be sanctioned you) if you are not in school because of lack of child care or because of domestic or teen dating violence (like where your current or former boyfriend is stalking or has threatened.

2. Are there any reasons for lack from college?

Yes. You could have good cause of absences due to not enough transport or kid care, inclement weather, a medical condition, an urgent situation or crisis you will need to focus on. You are absent more than 25% of the time, you will first lose about $92 of you TAFDC grant for 30 days if you do not have good cause and. After thirty day period, you certainly will lose the entire TAFDC grant. Your SNAP/Food Stamps and MassHealth should carry on.

3. So how exactly does the living arrangment rule work?

If you’re under age 18 rather than hitched, you must:

  • Reside together with your moms and dads, or
  • Reside with another general (pertaining to you or your infant) that is age 20 or over, or
  • Reside with a appropriate guardian, or
  • Be described as a “graduate of a DSS living that is independent,” or
  • Be 17 yrs . old and meet”waiver that is special rules (see below).

Should you not satisfy among the above, you are expected to call home in a young adult living program — if an individual is available. You must be living with your spouse to be exempt if you are under 18 and married.


18- and 19- year teens that are oldand teenagers within 60 times of switching age 18) don’t need to live with moms and dads, loved ones or in team houses. However you do want to meet with the educational college rules above.

4. That are the family relations you’ll live with?

Teenagers nevertheless meet up with the arrangement that is living if coping with an aunt, uncle, grandparent, older sibling or other general who’s age 20 or older. You’ll be able to live by having a stepparent—like that is former father’s ex-wife or perhaps the paternal grand-parents of one’s son or daughter (but this doesn’t consist of coping with the little one’s dad if you should be unmarried). Your family members don’t have to get appropriate guardianship. If you reside having an unrelated adult, that individual does should be legal guardian.

The income of family relations or guardians that are legal perhaps not count in determining your TAFDC grant.

5. Imagine if you cannot live along with your moms and dads?

If you are under 18 and cannot live along with your mum or dad, tell DTA. A teenager expert under contract with DSS will contact you and have a look at whether you can easily carry on together with your moms and dads, in a teen living system, or all on your own. You ought not have to live in the home in the event that you worry punishment, if the parent(s) refuse to give you support, there was drug abuse in your home, in the event that house has rule violations, or if perhaps you will find some other “extraordinary circumstances.” The teenager specialist’s work is always to discover why you simply cannot live at home and also make a suggestion make sure to inform her all of the reasons. You may pose a question to your school guidance counselor or other experts who understand you to definitely phone or compose the teenager expert. In the event that teenager professional agrees you simply can’t go homeward, DTA could find you a living that is teen to get or give you advice associated with waiver guidelines for 17 12 months olds.


Teenagers that are 17 yrs . old and should not live along with your moms and dads can request an unique “waiver” to reside by themselves if: a) in a great living situation, b) at school full-time in good standing, c) have actually stable son or daughter care and d) are taking part in a teenager parenting system.

You do not need a waiver and are exempt from the rule if you are within 60 days of turning age 18.

6. Just Exactly How is Parental Money counted?

If you’re under age 18 and live in the home, your moms and dads’ earnings above 200percent associated with poverty degree matters in deciding exactly how much TAFDC both you and your infant get. This degree happens to be $1,990/month for just two persons. In the event the moms and dads will not inform DTA their income, you might be rejected TAFDC however you can certainly still submit an application for SNAP/Food Stamps and MassHealth.

Your parent’s earnings will not count when you turn age 18. The earnings of non-parent family members you reside with will not count —regardless of the age.

7. Challenging denial of advantages:

In the event the TAFDC will be cut, you have actually a the proper to an advance written notice.

In the event that you request a hearing within 10 times of the date of notice, your benefits should carry on through the appeal.

You’ve got the right to bring in virtually any brand new proof about why you simply can’t live in the home. Any information that explains why you missed classes if DTA says you missed too much school, bring to the hearing. You’ve got the straight to see your TAFDC situation record, including college attendance records and/or reports from the DSS contracted teenager professional. You’ve got the directly to make copies of every papers in your file, to inquire of concerns of DTA worker or perhaps the teenager specialist during the hearing and also to bring a close friend or advocate to help you.

Call the local Legal Services to get more advice or representation that is legal. You’ll be able to contact the Massachusetts Alliance on Teen Pregnancy: for advice and referrals.

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